The Greens’ Midwinter Ball Protest Dresses Have Divided The Internet

The ball made headlines last month after it was revealed to be sponsored by major fossil fuel companies and lobby groups.

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The internet is divided after key figures from Australian politics, media and business gathered at Parliament House on Wednesday night for the Federal Parliament Press Gallery Midwinter Ball — which was sponsored by fossil fuel companies and lobby groups.

Sponsors of the event — which is a major charity fundraiser — included Shell and Woodside Energy, as well as lobbying groups Hawker Britton (Equinor) and Nexus APAC Group (Glencore).

The event made headlines last month after independent Senator David Pocock called for changes to future sponsors of the event amid the ongoing climate crisis. Despite his criticism, Junkee can confirm that Pocock did attend the Midwinter Ball, but did give a speech outside of the event regarding sponsors.

Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young attended the event wearing a gown that mimicked Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s infamous Met Gala look in protest of the coal and gas sponsors.

Greens leader Adam Bandt also attended the event with his wife Claudia Perkins, who wore a similar dress in protest of coal and gas.

The statement frocks provoked mixed reactions online.

Some praised the dresses for being “fantastic” and “iconic”.

However, others pointed out the irony of attending a ball sponsored by fossil fuel companies while protesting said fossil fuels.

Others simply asserted that political statement outfits should not be accepted if the dresses are ugly.

In addition to protest frocks, someone in attendance at the event was able to plaster a Fossil Ad Ban sticker over the corporate sponsorship board.

While three Greens representatives attended the event, others took to social media to announce they would not attend the ball due to its connection to coal and gas.

Senator Jordon Steele-John called the event “sickening”.

Greens Senate Leader Larissa Waters also boycotted the event, but noted she was pleased the organisers are reconsidering future sponsorship opportunities.

Other attendees included Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Opposition Leader Peter Dutton, as well as prominent members of the media from ABC, SBS, Nine and News Corp.

The event raised $350,000 for charity, which will be split among a number of causes.

Junkee has reached out to the Greens for comment.